She posted a question about the war in Ukraine on Instagram. Then she faced a prison term

By | March 23, 2023

The New York Times reports:

Sitting in a small courtroom flanked by her two lawyers last month, Olesya Krivtsova was facing a stiff penalty for her fondness for posting on social media. Barely 20 and until this year a university student in northern Russia, she was accused of “justifying terrorism” and “discrediting the Russian armed forces,” and was facing up to a decade in prison.

Her apparent crime? An Instagram post asking why Ukrainians had rejoiced when the main bridge to Russian-occupied Crimea was attacked in October.

The post eventually landed Ms. Krivtsova on the Kremlin’s official list of terrorists and extremists. She was placed under house arrest and forbidden from using the phone or the internet.

Ms. Krivtsova did not wait for a courtroom verdict: Last week, she fled the country.

“I decided to leave because I was desperate,” Ms. Krivtsova said by telephone on Friday from Vilnius, Lithuania. “It is impossible to prove anything to the Russian court.” [Continue reading…]